When you are middle aged, it can be frightening to have to look for a new job at any time. In these especially worrying times, it is even scarier. You feel that employers are only looking for younger workers and will not consider your application seriously. You feel, keenly, grief for the loss of your old job and its comfortable security and stability. Although the media may have you believe that society is youth orientated, this is not necessarily true in the workplace now.
You may well be under rating your value to an employer. You have a vast quantity of life and work experience, something that a young person cannot possibly have. Prospective employers may under rate your value too. It makes sense for middle-aged workers to examine what marketable skills they actually do have, so that they can boost their own confidence, enough to be able to present themselves to prospective employers to best advantage.
Experience is the most important asset that the middle-aged worker has; this comes in two forms, life experience and work experience. Life experience teaches you how to relate to people, and how to solve problems and difficulties. Work experience teaches you technical skills, the understanding of responsibility, work processes, and the need for a strong work ethic. Experience only comes with living and years, and is something that young workers cannot possibly have.
Self-knowledge is something else that middle-aged workers are more likely to have, than younger workers. Middle-aged workers understand themselves, how they work and where their particular talents are.
A work record is another thing that middle-aged workers have, that youngsters do not have. You have accomplished a great deal in your life and can show an employer clearly what you have done and achieved. Young workers can only tell an employer what they hope to achieve.
Along with these very valuable skills and attributes, employers will look for some others in a prospective employee. You may have studied, or had workplace training, during your career, and you should note this on your curriculum vitae. It shows prospective employers that you can apply yourself, you are willing to learn new things, and that you are open to new ideas.
The workplace has changed hugely since you began work and computer skills are necessary have in today’s workplace whatever your job. If you can find your way around the internet and have knowledge of some basic, widely used software, such as Microsoft word and Excel, you probably have sufficient computer skills. Probably, you have been keeping abreast of technology as it grows, but if you are at all unsure of yourself, computer training is widely available, and may even be free in some countries.
The ability to work well with others, but also to have the resourcefulness, confidence, and self-reliance to work alone are necessary skills in the modern workforce. Good communication and listening skills are also an asset for workers of any age. These are all skills that a middle-aged worker is likely to have learned through experience.
The middle-aged worker has more to offer a prospective employer, than he, or she, probably realizes. Aside from technical knowledge of the actual work that he, or she, does, the middle-aged worker has other skills, attributes, competencies, and experience that any employer will find attractive.